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Behind the scenes of the Spanish ambassador's mandate extension in Rabat

Spain's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya. / DR
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In October, the Spanish government decided to extend the mandate of the current Spanish ambassador to Rabat, Ricardo Díez-Hochleitner Rodríguez, by one year. The latter served for five years as head of the diplomatic representation.

The Spanish government has made the decision after the Moroccan authorities were given a list of names.

According to El Español, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Arancha González Laya has decided to elect a new head of the Iberian country's embassy in Rabat, «months ago». She then «proposed to Rabat a short list of candidates, that were all rejected» by Morocco.

This refusal «forced the Foreign Affairs Ministry to extend the mandate of the current ambassador to one year», it added.

Said list included the former Minister of Housing, María Eugenia Trujillo, the chief of staff of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Camilo Villarino, the former Minister José Bono, the former president of Andalusia Junta Susana Díaz and the current Minister of Agriculture, Luis Planas.

The same source recalls that the Spanish consulate in Rabat is without a consul general. «González Laya appointed the consul María Celsa Nuño García as the undersecretary of the ministry, which left the post of consul general vacant in the Moroccan capital», the same source added.

The Spanish government appointed Fernando Villalonga in October. More than a month later, his appointment by the Council of Ministers has not been approved by Morocco.

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